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STORY AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY CHRIS POH
TRhe Washington House as seen in American Public House Review
THE HISTORIC WASHINGTON HOUSE IN SELLERSVILLE, PENNSYLVANIA

There are no claims that George and company ever slept at the historic WASHINGTON HOUSE in Sellersville Pennsylvania; but there is that persistent, yet unsubstantiated, legend that the Liberty Bell and those charged with its safekeeping stayed on the property overnight during their arduous trek from Philadelphia to Allentown.

What history does record though is that after the defeat of the Continental Army at the Battle of Brandywine, it was realized that Philadelphia would most likely fall into British hands. The decision was made to take down the Liberty Bell, (then known as the State House Bell) along with eleven other bells and move them out of the city. This was done as a strategic move to deny the British access to a source of metal that could be melted down and recast into cannons.

On or about September 11th of 1777 a train of 700 wagons escorted by 200 hundred cavalry from North Carolina and Virginia under the command of Colonel Thomas Polk began their journey northward. By the 24th of September all of the bells were at locations under the protection of the citizens and clergy of Northampton Towne, (present day Allentown). The State House Bell was hidden below the floorboards of the Zion’s Reformed Church.

Sellersville Theater's paisley wall pattern

The Liberty Bell's journey as seen in American Public House Review

It would be a fairly safe to assume that during the fifty five mile journey which lasted nearly two weeks, at least some contingent of that military transport would have sought respite, shelter and perhaps a bit of libation at the property and tavern of Louis Weikel, (known today as the WASHINGTON HOUSE and site of the SELLERSVILLE THEATER 1894). Conversely, it might also be the inclination or temptation of any proprietor to want to attach some bit of historic import to these worthy surroundings. This notion of success by association quite often causes us to lose sight of the countless unrecorded lives and events that have occurred in those grand historic structures that have survived at the crossroads of our collective pasts.

Washington Hoise wine cabinet as seen in American Public House Review
















Washington House taps as seen in American Public House Review
DISTINCTIVE ANTIQUE WINE CABINET
A NICE SELECTION OF FINE BEERS AND ALES ON TAP

Although these lesser events and less recognized lives are the muscle and connective tissue of this nation, they seldom are included in the historian’s pen to paper process. Instead these people and their stories have been in the care of the bards and musicians of each generation. Perhaps this is the more appropriate stewardship, as music and storytelling have always been a significant aspect of tavern life. The American public house continues on as a place where people can put aside their failures and afflictions, and in due course raise their glasses and their voices in celebration of our successes and our liberty.

The Bar at The Washington House as seen in American Public House Review
THE BAR AT THE WASHINGTON HOUSE

Today the WASHINGTON HOUSE and SELLERSVILLE THEATER 1894 are owned by Elayne Brick and William Quigley. As a result of their vision, hard work and dedication to details both buildings are again central to the life of this vibrant community.

For the second time since 2001 the theater has gone through extensive reconstruction. The recently completed work adds a new lobby and box office to what was already one the most elegant small theaters in America. And yes, the lobby does include a fine little bar to hold you over until the last curtain call and the chance to stroll next door for a proper nightcap at the Washington House.

The Sellersville Theater as seen in American Public House Review
The lobby bar of the Sellersville Theater as seen in American Public House Review
THE SELLERSVILLE THEATER 1894
THE THEATER'S LOBBY BAR

What more could one request from life other than a good song, a good drink and a good friend to share the experience!

The Washington House at night as seen in American Public House Review




WASHINGTON HOUSE RESTAURANT
&
SELLERSVILLE THEATER 1894


136 NORTH MAIN STREET
SELLERSVILLE, PENNSYLVANIA 18960
(215) 257-3000

www.washingtonhouse.net

















SELLERSVILLE THEATER 1894
&
WASHINGTON HOUSE RESTAURANT


24 WEST TEMPLE AVENUE
SELLERSVILLE, PENNSYLVANIA 18960-2421
(215) 257-5808

www.st94.com

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